We’re all guilty of panic-buying ‘stuff’ for halloween costumes we only wear once and never use again. Unfortunately this tends not only to be a waste of money, but also contributes to mass amounts of landfill every November when people chuck their costumes in the bin. Another problem with buying ready-made costumes is that they’re usually made to be cheap and disposable, because who wants to go as the same thing every year for halloween? so the garments are often dubiously sourced.
But luckily, Kasia and I came up with a few golden rules for buying Halloween costumes…
- Don’t buy anything you can easily make yourself.
- If you have to buy something, get it from a charity shop. If it’s an item you’ll never use again, you can even ‘lease’ it, i.e. buy the item for the night, wash it, and give it back to the charity shop… that way you have donated to charity and got a costume out of it.
- Borrow items of clothing from your friends where you can.
- Be creative.
So with only two days until Halloween, rather than panic-buy something, here are a few potential DIY costume ideas we came up with that you can probably make using stuff in your house:
Rosie the Riveter
Pretty simple. Just tie a red scarf or piece of material around your head (Kasia found one easily in a charity shop), wear some red lipstick, a blue shirt, jeans, boots and you’re good to go.
90s Double Denim Duo
90s outfits are my favourite. Double denim, chokers, butterfly clips, cowboy hats, flannel shirts, scrunchies, ski jackets….go crazy. I’m sure the back of your closet has something interesting to offer.
Acquire a beard, i.e. grow one or paint one…mascara works really well as stubble. Wear a check flannel shirt and suspenders if you have them. Baggy jeans, a hat, boots, and you’re set.
Perfect for the ‘leasing’ idea I mentioned earlier…this is a great way to give to charity and look fabulous for a night. Believe me, you’ll be surprised how many fake fur and animal print coats you can find in charity shops.
Pretty ingenious. If you have an old broken umbrella and a hoodie, you can cut the umbrella in half and safety pin it to your hoodie. Sew ears onto the hoodie if you want and wear all black. Scrunch your face up all the time and speak only in an extremely high pitched voice for extra realistic results. (Click on photo for source)
Sandy and Danny from Grease
Couples costume! This one’s an absolute winner because all you have to do is wear all tight black clothes and massively style your hair in an 80s theme. Dance a lot.
The Royal Couple and Baby
Wear blue and wrap a bulky item (sneaky bottle of something perhaps) in a towel/blanket and carry it around. If you’re kate make sure you look perfect. All the time.
If you’re willing to put in a little more effort, making a lego brick costume is actually not that hard. You can recycle an old cardboard box that fits around your body, glue some recycled yoghurt cups onto it, and paint the whole thing one colour. then make sure you wear the same coloured shirt and trousers and voila. you have become lego.
Takes a bit of work on the facepaint/makeup front, but this is pretty easy. fashion some ears out of cardboard and a headband, wear white and look sour. If you don’t know who grumpy cat is, here’s a video.
Do you have red hair? Are you a man? Carry some bread with/on you in a basket or a necklace or something. You are now a gingerbread man.
Okay maybe it’s too easy. But at least you’ll look scary. put your hair in buns and wear as little clothing as possible. Extra points if you’re a man.
Kasia’s favourite go-to costume, this only works if you already own a stripy jumper, glasses and bobble hat. Since we live in a cold climate almost everyone here has those items. Photobomb people’s pictures all night by standing hidden the background smiling straight at the camera.